It seems like just yesterday I was stretching my daughter like a mini human Gumby in her baby yoga class. In early elementary school, we enjoyed some special time at a Saturday mother/child class. Then came kids yoga classes on her own. After a few years of her not practicing, I can see middle school years are when tween yoga would help her most.
My tween daughter snipes at me then instantly melts back into the sweet girl at her core. I want to help her navigate this hormonal invasion with something familiar. So I set out to find where those too old for kids yoga and too young for teen yoga go to find “center” in their ever-changing bodies. When I inquired about her joining me at the yoga studio where I practice, I got a hard no, but as I reached out to other studios around Portland, I found a lot of reception for tween yoga. Many are open to welcoming tweens practicing alongside a parent as long as they can stay on their mat for the duration of the class and not be disruptive.
This past weekend my daughter and I tried out the Saturday community beginner class at Yoga Union. They were incredibly welcoming. I felt like we had come full circle to a different kind of mother/child yoga. One where my daughter can connect with herself while we share some special time together. I also found a place for her to practice yoga with friends. Sellwood Yoga hosts a two-hour Tween Yoga & Mindfulness Retreats especially for girls 10-14 years old.
The key for me was to find places where my tween and I can drop in when she needs to reset and quiet her mind or stop the circular thinking stemming from middle school drama. The added bonus is that I get to reset myself to a place of not reacting to the emotional blips on the tween radar. All of it sums up my growing girl. She still needs me beside her but she can do her own Gumby bending now.
Spots Around Portland for Tween Yoga:
- Yoga Union: The Saturday Yoga for Beginners (free class) from 12:3-1:30 is a great place to start. We grabbed a smoothie at Fern Kitchen after class to extend our date. If you have smaller children, Yoga Union has an onsite childcare center, too.
- Yoga Bhoga: They worked with me via email to find the best fit for my daughter and I to come together. We are going to check out their Slow Flow and Hatha Flow classes.
- Sellwood Yoga: Tween yoga workshops, teen yoga, and family yoga at this great space!
- The People’s Yoga: Allows tweens to start attending classes on their own at age eleven, and they are very welcoming to parent/tween combos. They recommend starting with All Level Hatha Flow for a more active class and Gentle Hatha or Yin for relaxing classes.
- Drishti Yoga: They allow tweens and teens to practice with a parent in all their classes.